For protecting a Wadi plot from stray animals and theft, fencing along the entire boundary is recommended. Barbed wire fencing is expensive and needs protection from pilferage. Hence cheaper methods are adopted.
Where soil is shallow and stones are available in plenty, a stone wall around 1m wide at the bottom and 45cm wide at the top is laid along the entire boundary.
If the ground is soft with good soil depth, a trench of minimum 1m width at the top and 0.75-1.0m depth is dug along the inner side of the boundary. The soil excavated from the trench is used to form a mound, 15cm away from the trench, on the inner side. The mound is made as high as possible. Thorny bushes are planted on the mound.
Dry and live hedge
The most common method of fencing Wadi plots is a combination of dry and live hedges.
Initially, dry branches of thorny bushes like karvanda are used to make a fence, with the help of bamboo poles. During the rainy season, fast-growing, thorny species are planted behind this fence.
Plants used to make such a live hedge include euphorbia (thor), agave, cactus, lantana and sagargota (Caesalpinia crista).
Trees like Gliricidia, ber, palas are also grown along the boundary, in Karnataka and Bihar respectively. In Rajasthan, jatropha has been planted. Other species suitable for planting as part of a live hedge are coral tree (Erythrina suberosa), vilayati babul, kewda and horse bean.
Apart from protecting the Wadi plot, shrubs/trees chosen for fencing can yield good income and biomass.
Barbed wire fencing with tree posts
One Wadi plot-holder in Vidarbha has used stumps of salai trees ( Boswelia serrata) as low-cost posts for a a barbed-wire fence. Read related field report. Stumps of Gliricidia can be used for the same purpose.